Cheltenham Festival-winning trainer Malcolm Jefferson has died aged 71 following a long illness.

His daughter Ruth confirmed the news of his death on Friday morning, with the licence now switched to her name and her first runners set to be at Wetherby on Saturday.

“He died this morning, we’re all very sad,” she said.

“We’d been in the process of swapping the licence and that has all gone through now.”

Jefferson started training on his own in 1981 and enjoyed Cheltenham Festival success with Tindari in the Pertemps Hurdle Final in 1994.

A year later he saddled the top class Dato Star to win the Champion Bumper. He went on to land the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton and Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle.

In 2012 Jefferson landed a Cheltenham Festival double with Cape Tribulation and Attaglance, both of whom followed up at the Grand National meeting at Aintree.

According To Pete was another horse many will remember.

Jefferson died with his wife and four children at his side.